"Continuing Anglican" Churches - We would argue the most consistently traditional or "classical" Anglican churches.

Continuing Anglican Miscellany

"Anglican Realignment" Churches (ACNA, AMiA, and others) - Conservative but markedly less traditional than the Continuing Anglican Churches.

Reformed Episcopal Church - Currently part of the Anglican Realignment but these days much more like the traditional Continuing Anglican bodies.


1662 Book of Common Prayer Online

1928 Book of Common Prayer Online

A Living Text

Alastair's Adversaria

Akenside Press

American Anglican Council

American Anglican Council Videos on the 39 Articles


Anglican Audio

Anglican Bible and Book Society

An Anglican Bookshelf (List of recommended Anglican books)

Anglican Catholic Church

Anglican Catholic Liturgy and Theology

Anglican Church in North America

Anglican Church Planting

Anglican Eucharistic Theology

Anglican Expositor

Anglican Internet Church

Anglican Mainstream

Anglican Mission in the Americas

Anglican Mom

An Anglican Priest

Anglican Radio

Anglican Rose

Anglican Way Magazine

Anglicanly Speaking

The Anglophilic Anglican

A BCP Anglican

The Book of Common Prayer (Blog of Photos)

The Book of Common Prayer (Online Texts)

The Cathedral Close

The Catholic Anglican

Chinese Orthodoxy

The Church Calendar

Church Society

Classical Anglicanism:  Essays by Fr. Robert Hart

Cogito, Credo, Petam

Colorado Anglican Society

(The Old) Continuing Anglican Churchman

(The New) Continuing Anglican Churchman

The Continuum

The Curate's Corner

The Cure of Souls

Drew's Views

The Evangelical Ascetic

Faith and Gender: Five Aspects of Man

Fellowship of Concerned Churchmen

Forward in Christ Magazine

Forward in Faith North America

Francis J. Hall's Theological Outlines

Free Range Anglican

Full Homely Divinity

Gavin Ashenden

The Hackney Hub

The Homely Hours

International Catholic Congress of Anglicans

Jesse Nigro's Thoughts

The Latimer Trust

Laudable Practice

Martin Thornton

Meditating on "Irvana"

New Goliards

New Scriptorium (Anglican Articles and Books Online)

The North American Anglican

O cuniculi! Ubi lexicon Latinum posui?

The Ohio Anglican Blog

The Old High Churchman


Prayer Book Anglican

The Prayer Book Society, USA

Project Canterbury

Ritual Notes

Pusey House


Rebel Priest (Jules Gomes)

Reformed Catholicism

Reformed Episcopal Church

The Ridley Institute

Ritual Notes

River Thames Beach Party

The Secker Society

Society of Archbishops Cranmer and Laud

The Southern High Churchman

Stand Firm


The Theologian

The World's Ruined


To All The World

Trinity House Blog

United Episcopal Church of North America

Virtue Online

We See Through A Mirror Darkly

When I Consider How My Light is Spent: The Crier in the Digital Wilderness Calls for a Second Catholic Revival



The Babylon Bee

Bad Vestments

The Low Churchman's Guide to the Solemn High Mass

Lutheran Satire


Ponder Anew: Discussions about Worship for Thinking People


Black-Robed Regiment

Cardinal Charles Chaput Reviews "For Greater Glory" (Cristero War)

Cristero War

Benedict Option

Jim Kalb: How Bad Will Things Get?

The Once and Future Christendom



Christians in the Roman Army: Countering the Pacifist Narrative

Bernard of Clairvaux and the Knights Templar

Gates of Nineveh

Gates of Vienna

Islamophobes (We're in good company)

Jihad Watch

Nineveh Plains Protection Units

Restore Nineveh Now - Nineveh Plains Protection Units

Sons of Liberty International (SOLI)

The Muslim Issue

The Once and Future Christendom



Abbeville Institute Blog

Art of the Rifle

The Art of Manliness

Chronicles: A Magazine of American Culture

Church For Men

The Church Impotent: The Feminization of Christianity, (Leon Podles' online book)

The Counter-Revolution

Craft Beer

Eclectic Orthodoxy

First Things

The Imaginative Conservative

Joffre the Giant: Excursions in Christian Virility


Men of the West

Mercurius Pragmaticus Redivivus

Mere Comments

Mitre and Crown

Monomakhos (Eastern Orthodox; Paleocon)

The Once and Future Christendom

The Orthosphere

Paterfamilias Daily

Tales of Chivalry

The Midland Agrarian

Those Catholic Men

Tim Holcombe: Anti-State; Pro-Kingdom

Midwest Conservative Journal

Pint, Pipe and Cross Club

The Pipe Smoker

Red River Orthodox

The Salisbury Review

Throne, Altar, Liberty

Throne and Altar

Project Appleseed (Basic Rifle Marksmanship)


What's Wrong With The World: Dispatches From The 10th Crusade


Numavox Records (Music of Kerry Livgen & Co.)




A Defense of the Doctrine of the Eternal Subordination of the Son  (Yes, this is about women's ordination.)

An (Extended) Short History of the Diaconate

Essays on the Ordination of Women to the Priesthood from the Episcopal Diocese of Ft. Worth

Faith and Gender: Five Aspects of Man, blog of Fr. William Mouser, International Council for Gender Studies

Father is Head at the Table: Male Eucharistic Headship and Primary Spiritual Leadership, Ray Sutton

FIFNA Bishops Stand Firm Against Ordination of Women

God, Gender and the Pastoral Office, S.M. Hutchens

God, Sex and Gender, Gavin Ashenden

Homo Hierarchicus and Ecclesial Order, Brian Horne

How Ordaining Women Harms Ministry to Men, C.R. Wiley

Let's Stop Making Women Presbyters, J.I. Packer

Liturgy and Interchangeable Sexes, Peter J. Leithart

Male-Only Ordination is Natural: Why the Church is a Model of Reality, Steven Wedgeworth

Ordaining Women as Deacons: A Reappraisal of the Anglican Mission in America's Policy, John Rodgers

Priestesses in Plano, Robert Hart

Priestesses in the Church?, C.S. Lewis

Priesthood and Masculinity, Stephen DeYoung

Reasons for Questioning Women’s Ordination in the Light of Scripture, Rodney Whitacre

Streams of the River: Articles Outlining the Arguments Against the Ordination of Women to the Priesthood ,

Traditional Anglican Resources

William Witt's Articles on Women's Ordination (Old Jamestown Church archive)

Women Priests?, Eric Mascall

Women and the Priesthood, Catholic Answers

Women Priests: History & Theology, Patrick Reardon

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                  Theme Music:  Healey Willan - Missa brevis No. 2 in F Minor


The Anglican Realignment's Formation Problem

Some excerpts from a Facebook discussion on the differences in ethos between Realignment churches such as the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) and the Anglican Mission in America (AMiA), and the Continuing Anglican churches, such as the Anglican Catholic Church,  Anglican Province of America (APA), Anglican Church in America, Diocese of the Holy Cross, Anglican Province of Christ the King, the Orthodox Anglican Church and others.  Most of these comments came from a fellow who is a layman in the APA but who has obviously spent a great deal of time and energy assessing the ACNA.  I find his analysis to be very incisive.  Bolded emphases are mine:

I think much of it might be this:

ACNA clergy understand that liturgy is tremendously important, and that parishoners need maturity.

American Christianity is almost anti-maturity, it's "outreach on steroids!!" People "on fire for Jesus" to do "outreach" before they've been properly formed.

With fast-fast-fast growth - ACNA can't form its parishioners, and it often has to practically grab folks by the collar and make them Anglican priests in order to grow this fast.

So many turn to continuing Anglican churches for more solidity, for nourishment needed for mature Christians.

And their parishioners don't really understand this and are pushing for stuff they "feel comfortable with" and that they think "will really help us grow." You know, the church growth handbook stuff. I've seen it from up close. Church growth handbook stuff is almost a recipe for a congregation living in perpetual immaturity.

This puts a huge strain on clergy. They have a lot of newbies who want to be Anglican but don't have the discipline yet. The newbies also wanna do the church growth handbook stuff. The congregation is clamoring to the point of insurrection to do the church growth handbook stuff.

The clergy need peace.

They find that with straight plain liturgy and congregations that aren't trying to do 24 million kids' programs and light shows.

It's not a matter of not wanting to save the Communion. They are mostly just tired. There aren't many Anglo-Catholics left.

ACNA badly needs church order and some rest and peace and maturity. Nearly all American churches do. But we think busyness is good and we're kindergarchic and we're immature and we're anti-intellectual. . . .

ACNA would have been spared so much grief if it had generally listened more to the Anglo- Catholics. They are NOT saying to Evangelicals: "swim the Tiber" or "join the ordinariate." They say stuff like: "get mature before you are spread out too thin." "Get to know each other well - collegiality, catholicity." "Don't run around waving your hands in the air yelling 'outreach outreach outreach.' First formation - then quiet, steady, solid outreach that isn't faddish."

nb, I'm super duper low low low church myself.

Or just talk to my bishop, Chandler Holder Jones, see what he has to say to Evangelicals.

It's probably mostly: "Listen to your priest. Don't just read anything you pick up in the Christian book store. Rely on your priest for what you "consume" spiritually in media. The coolest trend might not be what you need for spiritual growth; your priest knows better."

Why aren't Evangelicals saying these things? This is what caused us to get all Word-of-faithy in the first place.

Anglo-Catholics know how to say these things. Very solid, Scriptural advice. . . .

Something in catechesis DOES need to be said. And if they haven't been catechized, yeah - they need to just be told: "Look, you need the catechesis."

And if they are getting mouthy without good reasoning from Scripture, Reason, Tradition: focus on vocation. Their vocation is to learn these things. Learners are often brought off-track by "contributing" to discussions on church order. Not their place, not their vocation.

This can be made pretty clear in a "what we're about" statement. We're not about catering to newcomers; we're about helping our members with spiritual maturity. We have ways of keeping our church in line and not caving into the obsessions with newcomers and newcomer pressure. This is America, it's superficial as yackety yack. We need to do things differently or we'll just become another rootin-tootin Johnny Hotspeaker Church with a light show and a gazillion kid programs, where everyone during the week wonders how come that amayzing feeling they had in church isn't helping at all with kindness, patience, gentleness, self-control. . . .

I think, basically - ACNA got way too close to plain vanilla American Evangelicalism without questioning aspects having to do with language and liturgy. Language is tremendously important, but I hear huge huge mistakes in language from ACNA members - lots of experientialism and sort of "personalizing" everything. You talk about theology, asking about some issue having to do with research - they're like, "what does this mean personally for you?" - when maybe the point of the research has more to do with helping someone ELSE. It's like everything is some kind of devotional. This leads to thorough-going subjectivism and makes it difficult for clergy to appreciate that theology is important. Theology is sort of relativized to a devotionally experientially feely thing.

Worship hasn't been evaluated. Enormous gaps in the understanding, and almost adamant against speaking about it. Almost unable to comprehend that there can be a theology of music or that worship is more than "subjective" or "preference."

Aesthetic relativism. You talk about worship, if you don't say "preference preference" - they don't want to talk to you.

This is not the case in my APA parish.

There is a lot to be learned, one can be formed - just by going to a congregation doing plain, straight prayerbook worship without a lot of noise or tra la la's. If you don't like the bells and smells - go to a service without these. I don't give a flying fahita if they're there or not. I am low church, very very low church, but I "do not go" into territory if there just isn't any good theology for what's being done, and no interest in doing that theology. Then it's dangerous territory for me, priests should see I'd likely take away from the "feeling" of people emoting and such and even speaking about "the worship" is dangerous ground with me in the mix. So I can't help so I just don't go. But then I get all these people angry "he's not going to church." Go figure.

I wish all ACNA clergy would send their parishioners a few times a year to any church that just does plain straight liturgy and tell them: "look, these are people who didn't do the aesthetic relativism thing and actually know how to think about worship. We do what people like, they do what people need. Go there a bit to get mature and come back and we can ... well ya know ... try to figure stuff out."

I think a lot of ACNA priests are more or less blinded to the importance of the WAY we worship from all the busy-busy foisted upon them by relatively unformed, noisy people who think they know lots of great stuff from what they were implicitly taught in other churches.

I wish all ACNA priests had more rest, more collegiality, more time to worship together, more time to seriously contemplate what it is that people do when they come together and worship. . . .

(An interlocutor comments: "The main thing that irks me about the recent ACNA Provincial Assembly is that not one service was traditional Anglican worship. Not even close.")

I didn't watch it, I knew it would make me sad. I can only take so much.

What's going to happen to the quiet, prayerful, scholarly types we need to help America with so many of her problems?

They'll bolt out - "join us lot." But we're not organized, we don't have cathedral type resources necessary for good scholarship. We don't have the community potential which is necessary for good scholarship. Good scholarship always depends on community in some way - and it helps tremendously if it's Christian community which is worshiping properly.

I don't want the scholars "with us," I want them where they can be effective. BUT - they aren't going to be effective if their pastors won't talk to them unless they are "getting into the worship" AND doing all the nicey Evangelically type thingies that the people expect of them.

There's no place for them outside.




What Must It Have Been Like. . .

to worship in Hagia Sophia?


Anglicanism: Protestant or Patristic?

Bucket list item: to read through Schaff's 38 volumes of the Church Fathers before I die. I have read a number of selections of the Fathers, but now I'm keen on the chronology, because I want to discern in detail the development of the Catholic Faith.

I bought the set from a friend some years ago for $100. I'm on Vol. 1, just about to finish St. Justin Martyr and to move on to St. Irenaeus. (I've read the Apostolic Fathers, so I'm skipping them.) And while I know that Ter...tullian and Origen are important figures, for me Vol.5 - Hippolytus and Cyprian - is where it seems to all come together, followed by the establishment of the orthodox, catholic faith in the 4th century.

The early Church Fathers are far so removed from us in terms of place, time and circumstance, but you can certainly tell when you read them that they are ours and that we are theirs.

Anglicanism: Protestant or Patristic? If you claim the former, fare ye well. If you claim the latter, well, that's what what all parties of Anglicans claimed. They can't all be right. I personally think the early English Reformers missed the mark, being too enamored of Reformed theology.. If you claim both, well, there is a case to made for that, though the devil is in the details.


The Eternal Liturgy vs. Contemporary Worship 


Real Presence: The Eucharistic Primitivism of the Scottish Liturgy of 1764 

See this summary at Anglican Eucharistic Theology.  It was certainly a providential turn of events, in my humble estimation, when the Scottish Eucharistic rite made it's way into the American prayer book.  As this article notes, "The insertion of these ten words in effect undid Cranmer's (Calvinistic) theology that the sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving was restricted to words and sentiments in prayer."  From the article's summary paragraphs:

The Scottish Communion Office of 1764 presents a moderate realist view of both eucharistic presence and sacrifice.  The sign is associated with the signified in terms of both the eucharistic offering and the eucharistic presence of Christ.  Moderate realism is affirmed throughout the liturgy.

The influence of The Scottish Communion Office of 1764 has been substantial in Anglican liturgical development.  Ronald Jasper argues that the 1764 liturgy “marked a watershed in Anglican liturgical history” (Jasper, 1989: 36) since it gave approval to liturgical services based on primitive models.  This development has come to be the norm in modern liturgical development.  The 1764 liturgy also marked the beginning of a new family of eucharistic rites based more on the model of the 1549 BCP, rather than the 1662 BCP.  This idea of different families of eucharisitic liturgies based on either the model of 1549 or 1662 has also been affirmed by Massey Shepherd (1955) and Jasper and Cuming (1987) who along with Ronald Jasper argue that some provinces of the Anglican Communion (e.g. the United States of America, the Episcopal Church of Scotland and the Anglican Church of Southern Africa) follow the 1549 model, while others (e.g. the Church of England, the Anglican Church of Australia and the Church of Ireland) have traditionally followed the 1662 model.  In recent times many of these differences have begun to disappear with provinces such as Australia and England adopting liturgies based on more primitive models and reflecting 1549 (e.g. A Prayer Book for Australia, 1995 and Common Worship, 2000).  A process of liturgical convergence has occurred throughout the Anglican Communion, with the 1764 Scottish Communion Office remaining a seminal influence and watershed in this development. 


E.J. Bicknell on the History of Subscription to the Thirty-Nine Articles

One will encounter Anglicans of a specific stripe, J.I. Packer for instance, who argue that the 39 Articles are in essence a confession of faith, almost equal in importance to the Nicene Creed, if not of equal importance.  Here Bicknell belies that notion, and provides us with a clear warrant not only to interpret the Articles in light of the prayer book, and not the other way around, but to subordinate them to the much earlier and weightier authorities of the Creed and the Fathers.  Note the bolded emphases:

Up to 1571 subscription was required only of members of Convocation.  The Queen had not allowed the Articles to be submitted to Parliament.  But the open breach with Rome in 1570 and the Pope’s excommunication of the Queen obliged her to turn to Parliament in order to strengthen her hands.  In 1571 an Act was passed requiring that everyone under the degree of a Bishop who had been ordained by any form other than that set forth by Parliament in the reign of Edward VI, or the form in use under Elizabeth, should subscribe “to all Articles of Religion, which only concern the confession of the true Christian faith and the doctrine of the Sacraments.”  This was aimed at men ordained under Mary.  Further, in future no one was to be admitted to a benefice “except he ... shall first have subscribed the said Articles”.  The Act was ingeniously drawn up in the interests of the Puritans.  By the insertion of the word “only” subscription was made to include no more than the doctrinal Articles: the Articles on discipline were evaded.  However, in 1571, after the final revision by Convocation, Convocation on its own authority required subscription to all the Articles in their final form.  This was enforced by the Court of High Commission, though at times with less strictness.  In 1583, Archbishop Whitgift provided a form of subscription included in the Three Articles. All the clergy were to subscribe to these.  The first asserted the Royal Supremacy.  The second contains an assertion of the Scripturalness of the whole Prayer-book and a promise to use the said book and no other in public worship.  The third runs “That I allow the Book of Articles of Religion agreed upon by the Archbishops and Bishops of both provinces and the whole Clergy in Convocation holden at London in the year of our Lord God 1562 and set forth by Her Majesty’s authority and do believe all the Articles therein contained to be agreeable to the Word of God.”  In this way subscription was once more strictly enforced.  In 1604 the Three Articles received the authority of Convocation, being embodied after small alteration in the Canons of 1604 and ratified by the King.  The actual form ran: “I ... do willingly and ex animo subscribe to these three articles above mentioned and to all things that are contained in them.”  This form remained in force in spite of various attempts to relax the stringency of it.  In practice the form usually employed ran: “I ... do willingly and from my heart subscribe to the 39 Articles of Religion of the United Church of England and Ireland, and to the three Articles in the 30th Canon, and to all things therein contained.”  In 1865, as the result of a Royal Commission, Convocation obtained leave from the Crown to revise the Canons.  A new and simpler declaration of Assent was drawn up by the Convocations of Canterbury and York and confirmed by royal letters patent.  Today the candidate for ordination is required to subscribe to the following: “I ... do solemnly make the following declaration, I assent to the 39 Articles of Religion and the Book of Common Prayer and of ordering of Bishops Priests and Deacons.  I believe the doctrine of the Church of England therein set forth to be agreeable to the Word of God and in public prayer and administration of the Sacraments I will use the form in the said book prescribed and none other, except so far as shall be ordered by lawful authority.”  Two points need to be noted.

      (i) The Church has demanded subscription to the Articles from the clergy and the clergy only.  The fifth Canon of 1604 at most demands from the laity that they shall not attack them.  If other bodies such as the Universities have in earlier days required subscription from their members, they were responsible for the requirement, and not the Church.

      (ii) The change of language in the form of subscription was deliberate.  We are asked to affirm today, not that the Articles are all agreeable to the Word of God, but that the doctrine of the Church of England as set forth in the Articles is agreeable to the Word of God.  That is, we are not called to assent to every phrase or detail of the Articles but only to their general sense.  This alteration was made of set purpose to afford relief to scrupulous consciences.†  (A Theological Introduction to the Thirty-Nine Articles of of the Church of England, pp. 20-21.  Bolded emphases mine.)


Becoming a Prayer Book Family

Before we had children, when we had just started attending an Anglican church, I remember telling my husband that in the Book of Common Prayer there were words big enough and strong enough for all of life — birth, death, and everything between.

I grew up with only extemporaneous prayer, where I would grasp for original words that would inevitably prove weak. So, as we encountered the Anglican tradition, I found the Word of Christ dwelt in me richly through the rhythmic and f...itting prose of the 1928 Prayer Book. I found rituals that highlighted the sacramentality of normal life. I found myself drawing closer to Christ as I followed Him through the path of the Church Year.

This Prayer Book spirituality was very different than the type of spirituality I had grown up with. Instead of a constant inward look, I was looking to shape my soul according to something I found outside of myself. Instead of only focusing on my personal relationship with Christ, through the Prayer Book, I was joining with the Church Militant and Triumphant in the communal work of prayer.

Read the rest here.


"We Are The Resistance"

A must read from Rod Dreher on how some young Spanish Catholics are going about implementing the Benedict Option in their corner of the world.   Don't miss this one. 

And if you haven't read John Senior, read John Senior.


Why Is It Your Business How Other People Worship 

In our contemporary situation, when many professing Christians make their tenuous or downright nonexistent church affiliation a point of pride because their “spirituality” is personal, private, and “between me and God,” we need a robust liturgical theology to stop the bleeding. We need a worship reformation. You cannot serve Jesus faithfully while continually forsaking his church. True liturgical worship is evidence of this. Called out of the highways and byways, we gather. We listen to the Word proclaimed in the community, we hear the communal invitation to Table and together we are fed.

And then we’re sent out, the body of Christ like a burning coal on our lips and in our stomachs, and we begin to see things just a little bit differently. Like the body and blood of our Savior, we are fractured and poured out for the world around us.

Dear brothers and sisters, this is why liturgical worship is not a matter of conscience. It’s not a matter of preference or comfort. Liturgy is the life and breath of the church. It is where we are made ready for our mission as Christ’s hands and feet.

The ancient standard holds true: Lex orandi, lex credendi. As we worship, so we believe. The church’s mission is at stake here. That’s why I write, and why I keep on writing about this. It’s why I won’t simply stay quiet.

The church’s worship is my business, and it is yours, too.


Read the whole article by Jonathan Aigner here.


Trad Expressions™: Why High Church Is Contemporary 

From Laudable Practice:

Are calls for the renewal of the High Church tradition anything more than quaint ecclesiastical antiquarianism?

Four recent articles suggest that, rather than being antiquarianism, a renewal of the High Church tradition would contribute to the Church responding meaningfully to contemporary cultural movements. . . .

High Church liturgical concerns and a commitment to traditional liturgy can address that millennial desire for poetic meaning.

Four contemporary issues, each with which the High Church tradition can resonate.  A renewal of the High Church tradition - Trad Expressions™ - is not antiquarianism.  It is mission.

Read about those four contemporary issues here.


A Protestant Learns About Anglicanism

Great educational video featuring Fr. Gordon Hines, Rector of St. George's Anglican Church, Las Vegas, Nevada.


Chant For Men

And to hell with every form of feminized Christianity.  Anglicans should be advised that, once again, the East may show us Englishmen the way home.


It Came To This Once, And It Will Soon Come To It Again

Mark my words.



This Guy For Pope

"It is a false exegesis to use the word of God to promote migration. God never wanted these heartbreaks . . . . (Most of the Catholic hierarchy) are afraid of being frowned upon, of being seen as reactionaries. So they say fuzzy, vague and imprecise things to escape criticism, and they marry the stupid evolution of the world. . . . If Europe disappears, and with it the priceless values of the Old Continent, Islam will invade the world and we will completely change culture, anthropology and moral vision.” - Cardinal Robert Sarah, an obvious white separatist and Islamophobe

These Roman Catholic hierarchs aren't the only ones who have "married the stupid evolution of the world." Consider ACNA's role as well.


Militia Christi. Onward Christian Soldiers

Modern Templars.






Christianity's Masculinity Crisis

Islam v. Christianity.  The struggle is real among among Anglican clergy and laity as well.  Thankfully not all of us are "milksops." 

What Bernard of Clairvaux thought.  What Tolkien thought. 


An Anglo-Catholic Responsio

Delivered by the Right Reverend Chandler Holder Jones, Bishop Suffragan of the Diocese of the Eastern United States of the Anglican Province of America, at a recent conference on Anglicanism held at Beeson Divinity School.  Pretty much says it all and for some of us forces the question, "how long halt ye between two opinions"?


By The Rt. Rev. Chandler Holder Jones SSC

September 30, 2018

To begin, one must say, contrary to certain assumptions, Anglican Catholicism did not arise in a vacuum; in point of fact, so-called 'High Church' or better yet, First Millennium Undivided Church Faith, Anglicanism possesses a direct and unbroken continuity throughout the history of the English Church, from centuries before the Reformation, through the Henrician, Edwardine, Elizabethan, and Stuart periods, following along with the Caroline Divines, Laudians, and Non-Jurors, to the Tractarians and Ritualists, up to today. It must be strenuously emphasised that no other claimant to Anglicanism's authenticity can demonstrate such a historical continuum. Other movements in Anglicanism have a definite beginning, de novo, at the Reformation and later points in English history. Far from being a novelty, what we today call Anglo-Catholicism is a golden thread that runs through the history and heart of the Ecclesia Anglicana. It is that to which Anglicanism, in its Prayer Book and consensus patricum tradition, has always tended. It simply is, in short, the Church - in her givenness, her inherited theological and liturgical patrimony.

Anglicanism, in all of its complexity, should not be permitted to be deconstructed into a mere 'system of thought and theology.' Rather, it is a way of life that is ordered specifically by Anglican worship, Anglican doctrine, and Anglican life. To reduce Anglican worship, doctrine, and life to the cerebral questions of thought, or theology as an intellectual enterprise, is to reduce Christianity herself to a set of propositional beliefs. Separating worship, doctrine, and life from one another distorts the essence of the Church and her divinely-revealed Deposit of Faith. The aforementioned elements belong inextricably together in one mystery. Anglo Catholicism's dogmatic and systematic theology is a mystical theology, a theology which, at its heart, lies in her liturgy and sacramental life.

Anglo-Catholics believe absolutely in propositional truth, but Anglicanism cannot be reduced to a set of propositions that once affirmed, makes one a Christian. The ancient Church, which Anglo-Catholicism emulates, had no conception of separating statements of truth from life and worship.

The Church is not a sociological entity, but the Mystical Body of Christ endowed with a supernatural reality, a supernatural society of souls effused with divine grace. The Presbyterian Church may be Calvinistic, the Lutheran Church may be Lutheran, but the Anglican Church is not Cranmerian. At her best, she professes a consentient and conciliar, creedal faith, not a confessional one, in One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic constitution of Church and life.

In tracking the development of what would become known as Anglo-Catholicism, it is crucial in our study to note the influence and theological integrity of the Caroline Divines of the seventeenth century. No body of teachers or theologians has informed Anglicanism more. The Carolines shaped and fashioned the Tractarians, who were themselves no starry-eyed medievalists, but romanticists, men of earth and Altar, who envisioned a renewed life for the Church based on the Incarnation and the sacramental principle. Dr Edward Pusey developed a fifty-volume Library of the Fathers based on the Caroline Divines; the patristic resource ment, engendered by the Carolines, was and is at the centre of the ongoing Tractarian project.

Anglo-Catholics desire, not the revival of political fortunes, but the Church's self-understanding as a divine society, with a divine reality ushered into and divinising the material world. As a result of rediscovering Christian faith as an embodied, homonised, divinely conveyed gift to human beings, Anglo-Catholicism seeks to engage the secular culture in the most direct way possible, by serving the poorest of the poor. The restoration of monasticism was a concomitant development of this ministry to the suffering, the outcast, and the underprivileged. Anglo-Catholicism spawned a radical rebirth of theological and spiritual formation, of missionary work and zeal, and of Christian culture and civilisation throughout the world - in art, architecture, music, academic scholarship, and the Religious Life - because at its core pulses the Word made Flesh, the Incarnation of God the Word. Anglo-Catholicism is not so much eccentric as it is ecstatic, reaching beyond itself towards Christ in Himself and in His creation. Anglo-Catholicism is not Mere Christianity; it is More Christianity.

In the Incarnation, the form confers the substance. The Church subsists in and is forged by the sacraments, which extend and apply the Incarnation. Creation, redemption, and glorification are in their essence sacramental, the transformation of the material by the spiritual. Grace perfects nature. Supernature builds on nature. The Church is the Great Sacrament of Christ. So long as Continuing Anglican Churches exist, Anglo-Catholicism must be understood as a living reality, neither a failure nor a relic of the past.

It is indeed true that Anglicanism has never claimed to be the one true Church. Anglo Catholicism does not claim that either. But, importantly, Anglo-Catholics see themselves today as the via media between Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy, not between Rome and Geneva. For the Anglican Catholic, the via media is not a compromise between Catholicism and protestantism, but the central mainstream tradition of the Undivided Church shared by the Churches of East and West, what all First Millennium Christians believed and what Rome and Constantinople still possess in common today, the consensus fidelium of Apostolic Tradition. To paraphrase John Henry Newman's original meaning of the term, the via media signifies that the Anglican Church lies in-between puritanism and popery. The Anglican Church, in its received teaching and structural constitution, is neither puritan nor papalist.

Anglo-Catholic ecclesiology, believing as it does in the 'branch fact,' affirms that the Holy Catholic Church on earth is divided by human history into separate jurisdictions which may or may not be in full communion with each other, and often are separated sacramentally from one another, although all the branches, holding in common the Apostolic Succession of the Faith of the Ecumenical Councils and Creeds, the Apostolic Succession of the Sacrament of Holy Orders and the threefold Ministry male in character, and the Apostolic Succession of holiness and sanctity of life, are fully and truly parts of the One Catholic Church because they are sacramentally, dogmatically, and eschatologically one with Our Lord and the Communion of Saints

Regarding the assertion that John Henry Newman and subsequent Anglo-Catholics misunderstand the teaching of Martin Luther and of the Reformation itself, the Anglo-Catholic would most readily respond with the insights of Dr Eric Lionel Mascall. Reviewing the writing of Father Louis Bouyer, Dr Mascall submits: 'In all its positive affirmations -- the gratuitous character of salvation, the sovereignty of God, the role of faith in justification, and the supremacy of Scripture -- the Reformation was simply recalling Western Christendom to basic principles of the Catholic religion which had become obscured or ignored. 'It should be quite evident,' he writes, 'that the principles of Protestantism in their positive sense -- that most consonant with the spirit of the Reformation -- are not only valid and acceptable, but must be held to be true and necessary in virtue of Catholic tradition itself, in virtue of what makes up the authority of the Church both today and of all time.' Why, then, the reader inevitably asks, were the Protestant Reformers expelled from the communion of the Church? Bouyer's answer is simple: it is that, side by side with the positive principles which he has so enthusiastically extolled, there were in the Reformers' teaching certain negative elements, which first of all turned the Protestant system against Catholicism and then, in the next generation, turned Protestantism itself against its own scholastic system. The most devastating example of these is provided by the way in which Luther, the farther he advanced in his conflict with other theologians and finally with Rome itself, identified his proclamation of sola gratia with the particular theory known as extrinsic justification, according to which 'the grace of God envelops us in a cloak, but this leaves us exactly as we were.'' (The Recovery of Unity, Chapter 4 section iv. Protestantism -- a Critical Analysis pages 86-93).

Finally, the tangible situation of the Anglican world in the twenty-first century presents not one, but at least three, Anglicanisms. Is it not true that from the beginning there have been multiple religious expressions within the Church of England and in its overseas expansions? Is it not true that the sixteenth century attempted, with the Articles of Religion and Act of Uniformity, to incorporate different views - from Catholicism through different strands of protestantism - within a national Church, but to the complete satisfaction of none? Is it not true that Anglicanism is first attempted to be defined by the seventeenth century Caroline Divines, but that the patristic theology they espoused was not universally accepted? Is it not true that the eighteenth century saw the birth of liberal or latitudinarian Anglicanism? Is it not true that from the nineteenth century through the present day, there are three different expressions that each equally claim to be called Anglicanism?

These are, (1) the First Millennium Consensus, or Anglo-Catholicism, now mostly found in Continuing Churches, (2) Liberalism, now found in the Lambeth Canterbury Communion, and (3) Evangelicalism, mostly found in those bodies adhering to GAFCON. The Elizabethan Settlement has for all practical purposes collapsed and has ceased to exist, if it ever factually existed in the first place.


"Gentlemen, Prepare to Defend Yourselves!"

The Future of Christianity in America.

So, Christians who hope to preserve their values had better be prepared to fight. “In politics, as in life generally, the most important thing by far is Will,” I wrote in last week’s column. Unfortunately for the future of their religion, many Christians are lacking in Will. We saw this last week, when the young men of Covington Catholic High School were thrown under the bus by various Christian journalists, public intellectuals, and the Covington Diocese. As Henry David Thoreau wrote, “O for a man who is a man, and…has a bone in his back which you cannot pass your hand through!”

Yet Will is not all that is needed. It is primarily manipulation, the more unscrupulous the better, that decides power struggles in this world. Christians, then, may wish to pray for a little sympathy from the devil.


Continuing Anglicanism Before Continuing Anglicanism Was Cool

So happy to be serving here.